New Law Addresses Personal Care Products’ Effect on Water Quality
Do you use personal care products, such as skin cleaners, that contain plastic microbeads? Well, these products will soon be unavailable for purchase. Although many manufacturers of personal care products containing these microbeads have voluntarily agreed to phase out their use, a new law entitled The Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 bans the manufacture of products containing plastic microbeads after July 1, 2017 and, further, prohibits the sale of such products after July 1, 2018. The law, which was signed by President Obama on December 28, 2015, amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and prohibits the manufacture and introduction, or delivery for introduction, into interstate commerce rinse-off cosmetics containing intentionally added plastic microbeads. The reason for the ultimate phase out of plastic microbeads? These microbeads may be difficult to remove during normal wastewater treatment plant operations, and may pass through such plants, adversely impacting receiving streams and aquatic life in such streams.
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